Don’t expect TJ Dillashaw and Cody Garbrandt to run it back anytime soon.
The rematch was reportedly targeted by the UFC immediately following Max Holloway’s injury-related withdrawal from his featherweight title defense against Frankie Edgar at next month’s UFC 222 in Las Vegas, but Dillashaw promptly shot down the bantamweight championship bout when speaking to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto on Saturday.
The 31-year-old revealed that not only has fatherhood put training on the back burner, but he also sees little reason to put the crown on the line – against a challenger he deemed unworthy of an immediate rematch – with only one month to prepare when it took him nearly two years to reclaim it.
Garbrandt had taken to Twitter to urge Dillashaw and coach Duane Ludwig to meet him halfway and accept the rematch, but the champ reiterated his desire to challenge flyweight king Demetrious Johnson this summer – a matchup UFC president Dana White has endorsed on more than one occasion. The former Team Alpha Male cohorts clashed in a grudge match at UFC 217 in November, with Dillashaw dethroning Garbrandt by second-round knockout.
UFC 222 remains without a main event exactly one month out, but the promotion is reportedly hoping to book Edgar and fellow contender Brian Ortega in a non-title bout in addition to a new headliner.